Livura is Turvey's Favourite

Hardy seven-year-old Livura is Nathan Turvey’s favourite horse and the Ravenswood trainer-reinsman has high hopes that the New Zealand-bred gelding will take his stake-earnings over the $250,000 mark by winning the Garrards Horse And Hound Free Delivery Pace at Gloucester Park on Friday night.

Livura, who will be making his 105th appearance in a race, has drawn favourably at barrier two in a field of nine in the 2536m event. He maintained his good form last Saturday night when he started from the back line, raced in fifth place three backs on the pegs and finished solidly to be third behind Saying Grace and Better Scoot.

That followed thirds to Mighty Flying Deal and Mister Ardee, an all-the-way win over Good Times Ahead and Dredlock Rockstar and a strong-finishing head second to Chiaroscuro.

“He’s consistent, though his best form was probably a couple of years ago,” Turvey said. “But I reckon it is the best I’ve had him in a couple of years and I expect him to go good on Friday night.

“His latest run was good and in good time. And a couple of nice ones beat him. Three Kings (a fast beginner) has drawn barrier one, so it will be interesting to see where we end up. I have a couple of options.”

Turvey selected Livura early in 2016 and he races the gelding in partnership with Peter Ensel and Michael Rowe. Livura raced 26 times in New Zealand for four wins and eight placings and Turvey and his friends have no regrets about outlaying $45,000 to purchase him. Livura has had 78 starts for the trio for 18 wins, 31 placings and stakes of $203,940.

“He is a lovely horse to have around and he’s my favourite,” Turvey said. “He sees me in the morning, coming out of the house, and greets me. We’ve got a good relationship. He’s been a ripper for us.”

Turvey also is hoping for a strong performance from Beltane in race two after the four-year-old disappointed last Saturday night when he raced in the breeze before wilting to finish ninth behind Burning Rubber. “When I got pushed three wide (about 300m from home) that was sort of the end of him,” Turvey said.

“I’ve got Chris Voak on him (for the first time) this week because I reckon he will suit him. He’s a horse you’ve got to niggle at the whole way, and I just thought that Voak might be a suitable driver for him. The draw (barrier five) probably doesn’t play in our favour. But I reckon there’s a gear or two more there … you’ve just got to get it out of him.”